(AUSTIN, TX, October 5, 2023) — Gov. Greg Abbott announced Thursday that he is calling a special legislative session to begin October 10. One of the issues included on his call is “Legislation providing education savings accounts for all Texas schoolchildren.”
Texas School Coalition Executive Director Christy Rome issued the following statement:
“Education savings accounts will force taxpayers to subsidize private schools that are not required to follow student safety guidelines, do not adhere to federal protections for students in special education, and are not transparent with their use of public dollars. ESAs are intended to gut the local public schools that have brought communities together for decades, and anyone who votes to support ESAs is voting against the public school students and teachers — as well as taxpayers — they claim to represent.
The Governor’s agenda ignores the needs of Texas public schools in favor of a political push to support and subsidize private schools.
“Texas public schools are struggling. Per-student funding in Texas is among the lowest in the country, and our schools are struggling to find and retain the educators they need to meet the needs of Texas students. The Governor is choosing to make these problems worse by trying to shift limited state revenue to private schools. As we have seen in other states, most of the families who will get ESAs were already attending private school.
“Our member districts will not support any private-school voucher, no matter what the Governor chooses to call it. We are prepared to fight vigorously against the harm that vouchers will cause for students, families, communities and local schools. Legislators should unconditionally oppose sending one single dollar to private schools in the form of an ESA or any other voucher proposal.”